City of Colorado Springs / City Council / News

Councilman Miller Takes Last Flight

After more than 21 years of military service, Councilman Joel Miller is celebrating his upcoming July 1 retirement with a final flight in the C-21, a twin turbofan-engine aircraft used for cargo and passenger airlift. The flight, scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 20, will take place at Peterson Air Force Base.

Councilman/Lt. Col. Miller has been a member of the Active Duty Air Force, the Air Force Reserves and the Colorado Air National Guard, and is a distinguished graduate in Astronautical Engineering from the Air Force Academy.

After earning his wings, Miller flew the C-5 at Travis Air Force Base in California. While flying the C-5 around the world, he also attended Georgia Tech, graduating with a master’s in Mechanical Engineering.

Miller was then assigned to the Air Force Academy where he served as an assistant professor of Astronautics and flew the UV-18B Twin Otter for the parachute program.

After separating from the Air Force in 2001, he re-qualified as a reservist in the C-5 at Travis Air Force Base and was later recalled to active duty to rejoin the Academy’s Astronautics Department and parachute program. Eventually, he transitioned to a reservist position in the Twin Otter with the Academy’s 70th Flying Training Squadron.

Since October 2006, he has been flying the C-21 for the Colorado Air National Guard 200th Airlift Squadron out of Peterson Air Force Base.

During his military career, Miller received numerous honors including the:

  • Lt. Gen. William H. Turner Award for Air Force Strategic Airlift Aircrew of the Year
  • Air Force Academy Outstanding Educator Award – the highest honor bestowed upon Academy instructors
  • Company Grade Officer of the Year for the Department of Astronautics